France wouldn’t be French without its focus on food – something our children very much appreciate, especially when they get the chance to sample its delicacies.

Food is one of their many gateways to this beautiful language, from role-playing visits to the market, shops, cafés and restaurants to a school trip featuring a chocolaterie, a farm where goats’ cheese is made, a snail farm and local markets, as well as historic towns and cities such as Amiens.

It’s hard to get to grips with a language unless you understand the culture behind it and can see its relevance. So, building on a firm foundation of grammar, an understanding of word order and French phonetics, the children investigate the similarities – and differences – between us and our nearest neighbour. We look at the French influence on English history, language, art and culture through age-appropriate topics.

By Year 6, when they learn about the issues underpinning the French Revolution and the structure of modern France, they’re able to enjoy the antics of Le Petit Nicolas (loyal, not good at arithmetic, smallest in his class) and see that growing up is as much fun – and as challenging – whichever side of The Channel you happen to live.